Manchester United have been interested in Declan Rice ever since José Mourinho was in charge, as indicated by Daily Star.
However, having seemingly given up on him it is their latest move for Rice’s teammate Issa Diop, reported by Sky Sports.
This comes in the same window that United – along with their Manchester rivals – were told they would need to pay £90million to get Harry Maguire, as was reported by the Daily Mail.
Therefore, it is difficult to see how half of that sum, plus a cast-off player like Jones, is seen as a suitable offer for Diop.
West Ham are clearly making an exerted effort to build a young and vibrant squad who can move the club forward, so bringing in Phil Jones – or even his other out of favour teammates Chris Smalling or Marcos Rojo – would not be in keeping with that approach.
In addition, they will likely be on large wages, which West Ham would then need to pay if the player was to join the club.
Even if West Ham did want Jones, if his Transfermarkt valuation of £18million is used, that still means Man United’s offer totals £63m – £27m short of what Leicester demanded for Maguire.
The Frenchman is four years Maguire’s junior, meaning that while the Englishman is reaching his peak at 26-years-old, Diop still has plenty of room to improve his game.
He also matches his numbers in many areas already. He edged out Maguire’s pass success rate with 86% to his 85.4%, he also made almost three times the tackles per game, as well as making 1.9 interceptions on average compared to Maguire’s 1.2.
The fees being paid in the current market are extortionate, but the reality is that if Man United want to get players of this quality, they can no longer get them on a cut price due to the way the market now works.
Diop is one of the best young centre backs in the Premier League at the moment, so while the Red Devils may be able to save on the £90m Leicester want by moving for Diop, they will certainly need to up their offer if they are serious about bringing him to Old Trafford.